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patrickwilken
Senior Member
Germany
radiant-flux.net
Joined 2583 days ago

1546 posts - 3200 votes 
Studies: German

 
 Message 681 of 1317
27 August 2013 at 8:31am | IP Logged 
emk wrote:
patrickwilken wrote:
Wow. You are about the restrictions between US and UK. I can see 1 Iain M Banks novel available on Amazon.com:

I was overjoyed to hear that I might get even a single Ian Banks ebook. But when I clicked the link, it said "Your search 'french iain m banks' did not match any products in: Kindle Store" and offered me two papers books instead.


Weird. The link was working for me when I chose it, but I have a German IP which might make a difference. Anyway a bit more searching gives you:

L'homme des jeux (French Edition)

I did a quick look online and this site supposedly offers ebooks to people in the US, and has a much fuller range of ebooks available:

http://www4.fnac.com/

Though the books are expensive (this is true also for German books as the publishers are fighting against ebooks) and are available in EPUB format with Adobe DRM.

I don't know how much of a problem that would be for you. I have a plugin in Calibre that automatically strips the DRM from Amazon books, as I refuse to pay almost full price for books that are rented (even though Amazon says you are 'buying' them), and refuse to allow sellers of books to dictate what hardware I view them on. The same plugin allows for Adobe DRM etc to be stripped as well, though I have never tried it.

Edited by patrickwilken on 27 August 2013 at 8:54am

2 persons have voted this message useful





emk
Diglot
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United States
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 Message 682 of 1317
27 August 2013 at 2:55pm | IP Logged 
patrickwilken wrote:
Weird. The link was working for me when I chose it, but I have a German IP which might make a difference. Anyway a bit more searching gives you:

L'homme des jeux (French Edition)

Nope, still no luck:



patrickwilken wrote:
I did a quick look online and this site supposedly offers ebooks to people in the US, and has a much fuller range of ebooks available:

http://www4.fnac.com/

Has anybody actually managed to buy FNAC ebooks from the United States? I've tried a couple of times, but never actually wound up with an ebook, and I can't remember exactly why. (IP address restrictions? Way too many steps to get Adobe DRM to work with FNAC? Worst checkout procedure ever?) I'll go try it again if any US-based readers tell me, "Sure! I buy FNAC ebooks all the time!"

In fact, the only French ebook site I've ever seen which doesn't block US IPs is Izneo, and they only allow you to read online in Flash.

This whole DRM + region restrictions thing fills me with rage. I pay for my media. I don't pirate. And now you tell me that it's flat-out illegal for me to read French ebooks? So if I want to read a French book with no paper edition, there's no way for me to do so without breaking the law? This crosses the line—telling me I can't buy and read a book because of my nationality is censorship, and a violation of any decent moral code.

5 persons have voted this message useful



geoffw
Triglot
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United States
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1134 posts - 1865 votes 
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Studies: Modern Hebrew, French, Dutch, Italian, Russian

 
 Message 683 of 1317
27 August 2013 at 3:19pm | IP Logged 
I've gotten something from epagine.fr, but fnac didn't work. I got a message at checkout saying the sale didn't
go through and please make an international phone call to ask us why.
1 person has voted this message useful



geoffw
Triglot
Senior Member
United States
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1134 posts - 1865 votes 
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 Message 684 of 1317
27 August 2013 at 3:27pm | IP Logged 
emk wrote:

This whole DRM + region restrictions thing fills me with rage. I pay for my media. I don't pirate. And now you
tell me that it's flat-out illegal for me to read French ebooks? So if I want to read a French book with no paper
edition, there's no way for me to do so without breaking the law? This crosses the line—telling me I can't buy
and read a book because of my nationality is censorship, and a violation of any decent moral code.


Plus 1000. Slightly less blatantly horrible, but still maddening... I'm more than willing to pay (through the nose,
I bet) for tv stations or Internet streaming to watch Bundesliga and Eredivisie football, but because I'm
American I'm prohibited from buying access to any German or Dutch tv feeds. By law, all soccer must be in
English (or in some cases, Spanish). I choose to skip it altogether.
3 persons have voted this message useful



Ogrim
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Senior Member
France
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 Message 685 of 1317
27 August 2013 at 4:50pm | IP Logged 
emk, it is not only in the US you have that problem. I wanted to buy one or two books by Hermann Hesse in German for my Kindle, but I am registered on Amazon.fr, and they only have one Hesse e-book in German (and not the ones I would like to read. On the other hand, they have the other books in English translation! However, if I go on Amazon.de, I find several of Hesse's books for Kindle, but Amazon won't let me buy them since my Kindle is registred on their French site. I really do not understand why Amazon cannot let their customers buy e-books from any of their stores (whether it's .com, .fr, .de or .es. Especially here in Europe, where we are supposed to have one big internal market with free flow of goods and services.

(Edited stupid spelling mistake.)

Edited by Ogrim on 27 August 2013 at 5:23pm

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patrickwilken
Senior Member
Germany
radiant-flux.net
Joined 2583 days ago

1546 posts - 3200 votes 
Studies: German

 
 Message 686 of 1317
27 August 2013 at 6:03pm | IP Logged 
Weird:



Perhaps it doesn't offer the book if you are logged in, and registered with a US credit card, but Amazon.com clearly offers the book.

It's strange because this is the only French Banks for the Kindle I can see on Amazon.com, whereas other's are available on Amazon.co.uk - so the US site is being somewhat restricted for US for both of us.

I did some further digging around and found this helpful thread:

http://www.amazon.com/forum/kindle/ref=cm_cd_pg_pg1?_encodin g=UTF8&cdForum=Fx1D7SY3BVSESG&cdPage=1&cdThread=Tx1VNT8G04X1 WXU

This led me to this website, which looks helpful but I don't speak French :)

http://www.ebouquin.fr/2010/02/27/ou-trouver-des-livres-elec troniques/

I came across this interesting comment on John Scalzi's site (http://whatever.scalzi.com/2012/06/13/todays-interesting-bi t-of-trivia/#comment-334883):

June 13, 2012 at 7:18 am

Claudio Morais asks: “Why is the ebook version not made available worldwide considering there are no physical constraints that may apply for the hardcopy version?”

This question gets asked all the time. Not surprising, since it is in fact a perverse outcome of inputs which, considered individually, don’t necessarily seem perverse.

The entity that published REDSHIRTS last week, Tor Books, has the exclusive right to sell the book in the English language in the US, Canada, and the Philippines, and a non-exclusive right to sell it in English in all other countries of the world–_excluding_ the UK and a long list of Commonwealth and former-Commonwealth countries. A list which includes South Africa.

John and his agent could have sold us the “World English” package of rights, which would entitle us to publish the book in English everywhere–we would certainly have been willing to offer for that–but instead they opted to take the slightly riskier path of selling us rights only in our core market, reserving the “UK-and-a-bunch-of-Commonwealth-and-former-Commonwealth-co untries” package to themselves, in order to try to sell it separately to a British publisher. (This is a slightly riskier path for most genre writers who aren’t top-level New York Times bestsellers, because British publishers don’t really buy very much SF and fantasy from the US below that sales level. This wasn’t always the case but it certainly is now.) After a period during which I imagine John’s agent shopped the book around to various British publishers (I don’t know the details because it’s, literally, not my business), they accepted an offer from Gollancz. However, that deal was concluded just a month or two ago, so it was vanishingly unlikely that Gollancz was going to get their edition out simultaneously with ours. I believe their edition is scheduled for November.

(Footnote here: An exact inverse of this situation is why Tor’s edition of Hannu Rajaniemi’s debut novel THE QUANTUM THIEF appeared in May 2011, several months after Gollancz’s edition in September 2010.)

The more interesting question you ask is: Why can you, in South Africa, buy a copy of the US REDSHIRTS hardcover from (for instance) bn.com in the US, but you can’t buy the US e-book edition? Why do online retailers pay attention to your address and credit card when assessing your eligibility to buy an e-book, while being willing to ship any edition of any print book anywhere?

The answer is a little arcane, but bear with me. The fact of the matter is that, when it comes to traditional printed books, neither the retail booksellers nor their customers (that’s you) are party to the contracts between John and his various publishers. Our contract with John says that _we_ won’t sell our editions of his book outside the territories in which John grants us exclusive and non-exclusive rights. Gollancz’s contract with John says that _they_ won’t sell their editions of his book outside the territories in which John grants them exclusive and non-exclusive rights. But if Amazon buys a bunch of copies in the US and someone in South Africa says “Hi, here’s my credit card, send me one,” no contractual agreement has been violated. Amazon owns those books, not us. They can do what they want with them, including selling them to people in South Africa, Shropshire, or the moons of Jupiter. Amazon is not John Scalzi, Tor, or Gollancz. You are not John Scalzi, Tor, or Gollancz.

(Another footnote: It has been perfectly possible and legal for regular people in the US to buy British editions for decades longer than the Internet has existed. For years one of the absolutely standard ads in the back pages of the NEW YORKER was a little panel ad offering “BRITISH BOOKS BY PHONE.” There’s nothing new about this.)

But the agreements under which online retailers sell our e-books include restrictions, imposed by us, which require them to keep track of where orders are coming from, and require them to refuse to sell to individuals who seem to be trying to purchase from outside the areas in which we have the right to sell. Effectively, in this case, Amazon (or bn.com, or Apple, or Kobo, or whoever) _is_ a party to our agreement which John. So they can’t sell you that e-book, because we don’t have the right to sell copies in South Africa.

(Two footnotes. First, yes, everyone knows that there’s a limit to how thoroughly anyone can police these restrictions. Get a VPN connection that makes you look like you’re online from a country where we have the rights, and a credit card with a US or Canadian address, and you can probably buy the ebook with no problem. Second, the agreements I referred to concerning ebook sales, between us and the online ebook retailers, have nothing in particular to do with any current arguments over “agency models” versus other models of ebook retailing. These restrictions were in place before the “agency model” and they’re in place now.)

Does this sound like a lot of bullshit gobbledegook? Probably. Is it true? Absolutely. Did it happen because everyone rolled out of bed one morning and said “Let’s make global ebook retailing baroquely complicated, because annoying our customers is fun”? No. Does the book industry need to be rethinking how it handles this stuff? Yep. Is it? I think it’s starting to. Meanwhile, you wanted to know why–and that long explanation is the “why.”


Edited by patrickwilken on 27 August 2013 at 6:58pm

4 persons have voted this message useful



Cavesa
Triglot
Senior Member
Czech Republic
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3277 posts - 6777 votes 
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 Message 687 of 1317
27 August 2013 at 10:10pm | IP Logged 
Thanks for the post, patrick.

Well, here we go. Pirating is the only way to make the industry move forward. Some are already realizing there is a trouble because they could have made huge amounts of money if they took the message and gave the customers what they ask for (recently, it was someone from the HBO pondering how much they could afford for the next season of the Game of Thrones if people worldwide were allowed to just pay a dollar per view and without the need to subscibe to whole channel. I think book sellers will follow soon after the movie industry does). Until they change the "laws" and the whole approach to their market, they will keep losing.
1 person has voted this message useful



Teango
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Winner TAC 2010 & 2012
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teango.wordpress.comRegistered users can see my Skype Name
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Speaks: English*, German, Russian
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 Message 688 of 1317
28 August 2013 at 1:26am | IP Logged 
Emk and others who have recently posted on his log have my every sympathy when it comes to trying to get hold of suitable French materials in the US. Like many of the rest of you, I'm more than willing to pay my scant-but-hard-earned cents on good legal resources in French, but it's just not that easy, it seems.

And as Ogrim points out, the US is not the only country that has to endure these draconian (and for the life of me, unfathomable) restrictions. When I was living in Germany, I tried to order Irish language books and DVDs from Ireland several times, and was repeatedly told that it wouldn't be possible due to some silly restrictions. Considering that the government is trying desperately to actively promote the growth and image of the Irish language, and considering that Ireland is actually a part of Europe, I just couldn't understand the logic of it all. To add fire to fury, I knew that a lot of these publications would be quickly snapped up and become unavailable for a second reprint, so I just found myself going from bureaucrat to bureaucrat, and banging my head against their already well-worn walls.

Maybe we should all chip in and send emk to France with an entourage of massively oversized suitcases, so that he can buy up as many quality materials in French over there as he can, and get in some real immersion and a few tasty croissants at the same time, and then we all meet up later or use the US postal service to share in the spoils of fortune on his return. ;)

Edited by Teango on 28 August 2013 at 1:29am



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